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Photography (MA)

Hannah Hernø-Toftild

Hannah Hernø-Toftild (b. 1997) is a Danish artist based in London. Prior to her studies at the Royal College of Art, she trained as a performer and theatremaker at East15 Acting School and as a Youth Talent at Fatamorgana, the Danish School of Art and Documentary Photography.

In her work, Hannah searches for moments of the sublime and mythical as they appear in nature. 

Degree Details

School of Arts & HumanitiesPhotography (MA)RCA2023 at Battersea and Kensington

RCA Battersea, Dyson Building, First floor

Black and white portrait of the photographer

Hannah Hernø-Toftild wishes to explore how we might illuminate the inner landscape of the spirit by looking into the outer landscape of the world. She is particularly interested in examining the experience of immanence, interconnectedness, and the liminal space between our lived reality and our subconscious.

Informed by her training as a performer, Hannah bases her methodology on the principles of physical listening: How seeing with all your senses is the beginning of devotion and, ultimately, the path to knowledge and a life lived intensely.

Silver Verse

Silver Verse is a reflection on the force of attention, love, and desire. 

I brought Justin to the studio in early March to take his portrait. We had known each other for less than five weeks and were falling in love, but I was cautious and held myself back. That changed as I spent the day observing him through my camera's viewfinder, following his every gesture and drinking in his body's transformations as the shifting light of Spring washed over him. Resistance was no longer possible. Three weeks later, we decided to move in together. 

Since then, I have printed the same two images of Justin close to two hundred times - constantly recreating and reliving the moment of the fall, but this time isolated under the red light of the darkroom. My obsession reached its crescendo as I spent weeks labouring over a single life-sized print consisting of nine pieces of paper - all exposed simultaneously but developed one after the other, as I gave my full attention to one part of his body at a time: The shape of his shoulders, the hairs on his chest, the veins on his hands. 

Collage made of nine pieces of paper showing a torso with chest hair
Silver Verse #1
Collage made of four pieces of paper showing a torso with chest hair
Silver Verse #2
Collage of the same image of a torso with chest hair and hand in front
Research for Silver Verse


Marshland is a photographic series about the marshes in East London. The photographs are the traces of my repeated journeys into this landscape from the beginning of Autumn until the height of Winter. As I returned and witnessed the daily transformations, almost always in solitude, a feeling of companionship with the place emerged. Slowly, these walks developed into a ritual and, finally, a physical need. However, a sense of uncertainty also took hold of me as the landscape expanded into a mythical place full of allure, defiance, and danger. It might invite you to cross the threshold into its world and bear witness to its secret life, but it demands a sacrifice: your surrender.  

Black and white image of a wild Autumn landscape from Hackney Marshes
Black and white image of a portal framed by trees
Black and white image of the core of a fallen tree
Black and white image of a portal between two trees
Black and white image of a portal of wild branches encrusted by snow
Black and white image of a tree trunk on a winter morning with frost and mist

Augustinus Fonden, William Demant Fonden, Nordea Fonden, Knud Højgaards Fond, Det Reiersenske Fond